About Library Friends

Libfriends-orng-trns-600The Library Friends group was established in the 1972-73 academic year when 347 charter members donated $12,175. Today, the Friends organization is nearly 3,000 strong.

I was in grade school the first time I was taken into the Library, by a family friend. I remember that we discovered the first issue of 'Life' magazine, which seemed to me of incalculable antiquity. For many months in the mid-60s, I returned to the archives for a University Centennial project, paging through a century of back issues of the 'Daily Illini' to compile ‘An Illini Century,’ a centennial memory of undergraduate life. It was an exciting time; I had the feeling that I might find most anything in those pages, and I did—from Lorado Taft’s farewell to Urbana to Red Grange selling his car in the classified ads.

— Roger Ebert

Film Critic

BS, 1964

Why support the University Library?

The Library is essential to the intellectual vitality of the University and attracts talented students, faculty, and scholars to the Urbana-Champaign campus. With more than 13 million volumes, it is one of the world’s great research libraries and renowned for the depth and breadth of its collections. The Library is central to the University’s mission of teaching, research, and public service, and it is the one campus unit that serves all academic disciplines.

The Library Friends Annual Fund Program

The Annual Fund Program provides crucial dollars to support the Library’s current needs. Within the past few years, gifts to the Annual Fund have averaged over $600,000 per year. The Printers’ Marks Society was established to celebrate and honor our Library Friends whose contributions have met and exceeded certain milestone levels.

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